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10-14-13 Linear Chromatic Hammered Dulcimer
  • 10-14-13 Linear Chromatic Hammered Dulcimer

    Comments on the Linear Chromatic by Dan Landrum

    Even though I can still see the regular diatonic markings I find that much of what I try to transfer from the diatonic to the linear is coming from muscle memory and it takes awhile (months of practice) to 'open up' to the greater distances. Some of the old vertical reaches become impractical and have to be relearned on the linear. What I find though is that just about anything that I learned vertically on the diatonic can be played horizontally on the linear. It just takes some getting used to, and sometimes forces me to use a left hand, rather than a right hand lead system, which any good player should be able to do any way. Sometimes I get lazy though and rely too much on my dominant right hand.

    Another issue is that when you miss a note, you miss it by a half step rather than by an interval that would have most likely fallen in the pentatonic scale on the diatonic instrument. In other words, mistakes (not that I make any ;-)), sound worse.

    Improvisational playing on the linear is sooo much fun. All the standard jazz theory that other musicians learn now applies because of the consistency of the half steps. It is wonderful to be able to play any scale in any key. I'm now playing cool jazz pieces that I would have never done on the diatonic".

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